PA Game Commission Northwest Region Field Officers’ Reports Released

eagleThe following Pennsylvania Game Commission reports were recently filed by Northwest Region field officers:

(Photo courtesy of PA Game Commission)

Butler County WCO Christopher J. Deal reports local game lands are full of young wildlife. One morning while walking on State Game Lands 164, he saw a half-dozen young rabbits, three fawns, a flock of hen turkeys with poults, and several groundhogs. All of this was within a mile walk along a trail.

Clarion County WCO Jesse N. Bish reports that a Knox resident was charged for leaving traps set and staked out after the close of season, and killing a goose in a closed season.

Crawford County WCO Mark A. Allegro reports that June was another busy month with bear complaints in the central part of the county. He also successfully prosecuted two illegal-dumping cases, as well as a case against an ATV operator who illegally rode on game lands.

Erie County WCO Michael J. Stutts Jr. reports two individuals were cited for driving on closed roads and starting a fire on State Game Lands 314. Both individuals pleaded guilty.

Erie County WCO Larry M. Smith observed a doe with a fawn, two bucks in velvet, six gobblers, a red-tailed hawk, an eagle, and numerous rabbits all in less than an hour on the way to check a bear trap. Not a bad day!

Erie County WCO Darin L. Clark reports he is seeing a good number of small rabbits moving about. The warm, dry spring has been good for small-game reproduction and should mean good hunting this fall

Forest County WCO Frank E. Leichtenberger reports wild-turkey populations are doing well this year, as he has seen numerous poults and adults throughout his district. He has seen a lot of fawns as well. Judging from the number of complaints about bears he has received, their population also is thriving

Jefferson County WCO Roger A. Hartless reports that summer typically brings with it an increase in the unlawful use of state game lands and co-op property, and this year has been no exception. Patrols have been focusing on unlawful off-road-vehicle use, litter, underage parties and the increasing problem of drug possession and use in remote areas like game lands.

Jefferson County WCO Andrew D. Troutman reports that several people have been cited for taking young wildlife from the wild.

Venango County WCO Ronda J. Bimber cited some individuals for camping on property enrolled in the Hunter Access Program. While the land is open to hunting and trapping, the landowner does not allow camping or ATVs. When asked if they had permission to be there camping, the individuals stated, “Who would we ask? No one owns this property.” Unfortunately, we hear this way too often. All land in Pennsylvania is owned by someone. It is your responsibility to determine the landowner and get permission.

Warren County WCO Eric M. McBride reports that a large amount of trash was found on state game lands. Individuals were identified by names and addresses that were found in the garbage. Citations are being filed.

Mercer and Venango counties LMGS Mario L. Piccirilli reports both of his crews have almost completed fertilizing, liming and planting corn, buckwheat, soybeans and clover on state game lands food plots. The Mercer County crew continues to mow pasture for the numerous resident geese in the Shenango River Lake area.

Mercer and Venango counties LMGS Mario L. Piccirilli reports the Mercer County Food and Cover crew assisted the Boy Scouts in setting out wood-duck boxes at the Shenango River Lake area for an Eagle Scout project. Thirteen wood-duck boxes were placed throughout the area.

Mercer and Venango counties LMGS Mario L. Piccirilli reports Venango County Game Lands Maintenance Supervisor Scott McKinley retired after 30 years of service. Shawn Perkins, from the Lawrence County Food and Cover crew, was promoted to Game Lands Maintenance Supervisor in Venango County.

Mercer and Venango counties LMGS Mario L. Piccirilli reports his crews have been observing numerous white-tailed deer in their daily travels throughout both counties, including some really nice bucks on all state game lands. Bear sightings continually increase; especially in Venango County on all the game lands. Many large bruins have been spotted, including one chocolate-colored bruin weighing about 200 pounds.

Mercer and Venango counties LMGS Mario L. Piccirilli reports both Food and Cover crews have been working on making brushpiles for bunnies. Both crews have also observed numerous turkey and grouse broods on state game lands. The fall hunting season is shaping up to be quite good with all the abundant wildlife being observed.

Clarion and Jefferson counties LMGS George J. Miller reports the Food and Cover crews in both Clarion and Jefferson counties have been busy planting food plots and improving access on the 11 game lands they are charged with maintaining. Please take some time to scout your local game lands and see what your food and cover crew is doing for wildlife and you

Clarion and Jefferson counties LMGS George J. Miller reports that he acted as a witness in a hearing where the defendant was found guilty of violating the conditions set forth in a Game Commission Special Use Permit. Those who apply for and receive Special Use Permits are reminded they ultimately are responsible for all those who act under the scope of the permit.

Crawford and Erie counties LMGS Shayne A. Hoachlander reports that Erie County Food & Cover Foreman Rick Haibach retired. He had a distinguished 40-year career with the Game Commission and had the same enthusiasm on his last day as he did on his first day.

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